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Omarosa Exits White House              12/14 06:10

   WASHINGTON (AP) -- True to form, former "Apprentice" star Omarosa is ending 
her time at the White House with a dose of drama.

   Omarosa Manigault Newman, one of President Donald Trump's most prominent 
African-American supporters, was escorted off the White House grounds after 
resigning her post as a presidential adviser, according to two White House 
officials who spoke on condition of anonymity.

   White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Wednesday that 
Manigault Newman's resignation is effective Jan. 20, one year after Trump's 
inauguration. "We wish her the best in future endeavors and are grateful for 
her service," Sanders said.

   The president also bid her farewell, tweeting: "Thank you Omarosa for your 
service! I wish you continued success."

   Manigault Newman was an assistant to the president and director of 
communications for the White House Office of Public Liaison, working on 
outreach to various constituency groups. But the office languished under her 
watch and White House chief of staff John Kelly had indicated that changes were 
forthcoming --- including her dismissal, according to the two officials, who 
insisted on anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly about 
personnel matters.

   Better known by just her first name, Manigault Newman was escorted from the 
White House complex Tuesday night but was allowed to offer her resignation. The 
U.S. Secret Service, which provides security for the president, tweeted 
Wednesday that it was not involved in her termination or her escort from the 
grounds. Some published reports said Secret Service officers had physically 
removed Manigault Newman from the complex.

   The agency confirmed that a pass granting her access to the complex had been 
deactivated.

   "Our only involvement in this matter was to deactivate the individual's pass 
which grants access to the complex," the agency tweeted.

   Manigault Newman's exit comes at the front end of what's expected to be a 
wave of departures. Deputy national security adviser Dina Powell is also 
departing early next year.

   Manigault Newman, who drew a top salary of $179,700, was one of Trump's 
highest-profile supporters during the campaign. She also worked with Trump's 
transition team.

   A former contestant on the first season of "The Apprentice," Trump's former 
reality TV show, Manigault Newman had long been unpopular with several senior 
West Wing officials, including senior adviser and Trump son-in-law Jared 
Kushner and Kelly.

   Kelly, the retired Marine general who had made it his mission to tighten 
White House operations and streamline how Trump gets information, has told 
aides that he wanted to curtail the number of White House officials with 
ill-defined positions and responsibilities.

   Kelly took away Manigault Newman's ability to come and go from the Oval 
Office as she pleased. During the first months of Trump's administration, aides 
were known to wander in and out of meetings, a practice Kelly ended across the 
board. She also drew Kelly's ire by occasionally going around him to slip news 
articles to the president.

   Manigault Newman enjoyed a close relationship with the president despite the 
fact that he once uttered the famous "You're fired!" line to her before 
dispatching her from the TV show. She held her April wedding at Trump's hotel 
blocks from the White House.

   She had a knack for generating controversy.

   An African-American White House reporter earlier this year accused Manigault 
Newman of physical and verbal intimidation, including issuing a warning that 
the White House kept "dossiers" on black journalists. The White House denied 
compiling such information.

   Her appearance at the National Association of Black Journalists' convention 
in New Orleans in August devolved into a testy clash with a veteran news anchor 
during a panel discussion on policing in black communities.

   Manigault Newman did not return voice mail and text messages Wednesday 
seeking comment.


(KA)

 
 
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